"CIOs expect that 37% of enterprise revenue will come from digital business by 2020, that is more than double what it was in 2015"[i]
2017 will bring new challenges for retail and consumer goods manufacturers as CIOs must accelerate strategic digital business transformation within their organization. Not only are they under pressure to be agile and technologically savvy, they must also find effective ways to leverage digital insights to engage customers, employees, consumers, suppliers and partners, all while accelerating innovation and increasing revenue.
As digital technology prevails, the boundaries of traditional industries fall by the wayside and a firm’s relationship to its customer, employees and partners shifts. We know more about individual customer preferences, on a mass scale, than ever before. Today, customer engagement knows no bounds. It transcends geographies, time zones, devices and channels. Employees can tap into information about customer preferences, inventory status or product information in real-time and use that information to enhance the customer experience.
At the same time digital technology is facilitating a transition to the “gig” economy where, employee / employer relationships may be loosely coupled; allowing businesses flexible, just-in-time access to a skilled pool of free agents. With similar agility, supplier and partner services can easily and transparently extend traditional offers; improving the overall experience and extending offers into new market categories that attract new sub-segments.
While physical goods continue to be commoditized, delivering service excellence across an integrated ecosystem of stakeholders promises to be the ultimate differentiator and the key competitive advantage. Improving the overall experience and reducing friction throughout the customer journey is vital to all stakeholders, because the quality of their end-to-end engagement not only drives relationships, but engenders loyalties.
Still, we must acknowledge that accomplishing this transformation requires a systemic approach, and not a superficial fix, focused solely on front-office factors. Firms must redesign the front of the house while also improving the backend infrastructure necessary to power this kind of agile commerce ecosystem. Focusing solely on the customer interface of an online order system merely addresses the tip of the iceberg, and this simplistic approach threatens to be the source of many false starts and longer term failures because the larger, underlining factors contributing to customer success were not addressed.
Competitive pressures continue to intensify. This means that CIOs for both retail and consumer goods manufacturing will need to find ways to rapidly deploy game-changing digital strategies to remain relevant in this new industry era. However, for many, it is difficult to know how or where to begin.
NTT DATA can help. We are fifth-largest customer experience (CX) and CRM implementation service provider worldwide and a Recognized Leader by Gartner[ii]. We partner with organizations to reduce friction throughout the ecosystem by employing a unique assessment framework called Customer Friction Factor, which powers insight-driven business transformation. Establishing a frictionless customer ecosystem will position your organization favorably as you move toward a new industry vision. In fact, doing so is a CIO imperative.
To get you started on your way to a frictionless future, we invite you to enjoy complimentary, limited-time access to our newsletter, featuring Gartner’s Industry Vision: Consumer-Centric Ecosystems for Consumer Goods Manufacturers and Retailers report. And don’t forget, if you have any questions or need additional information we are here for you.
[i] Gartner Industry Vision: Consumer-Centric Ecosystems for Consumer Goods Manufacturers and Retailers, Ellen S Eichhorn, Robert Hetu; May 2016
[ii] Gartner Magic Quadrant for CRM and Customer Experience Implementation Services, December, 2016; ID: G00299019; Analyst(s): Patrick J. Sullivan, Ed Thompson